AceShowbiz - Fran Drescher's recent trip to Italy doesn't sit well some Hollywood actors. The actress, who currently serves as the National President of the SAG-AFTRA, has landed in hot water for attending a promotional event for Dolce & Gabbana in Puglia amid the union's negotiation with major studios.
On Sunday, July 9, the former "The Nanny" star attended a fashion show for the Italian brand where she posed for pictures with Kim Kardashian. In one of the snaps, the reality TV star puckered up as she took a photo with her so-called "fashion icon."
"My fashion icon! Always on my mood board! I seriously love this woman! The oh so gorgeous @officialfrandrescher," so Kim captioned their photo. The two ladies also posed for a group shot with other celebrities at the event, including Kim's mom Kris Jenner, actresses Helen Mirren, Angela Bassett and Kerry Washington as well as model Rosie Huntington-Whiteley.
Fran was soon blasted by actors for her Italian trip and photos with Kim, which many deemed "tone deaf" amid the union's looming strike. "Narcos: Mexico" actor Lenny Jacobson tweeted, "Negotiating our possible strike from Italy seems like a strange strategy @frandrescher @sagaftra."
"Look - I'm not saying one can't have a personal life," actress Briana Cap wrote on Twitter on Monday. "And I'm not saying one can't take a vacation. But we are in the middle of the most crucial negotiation in decades and our WGA siblings are on day 70 of fighting for their lives. The optics here are *truly* awful. Do better."
A senior executive at an AMPTP member studio also weighed in on the matter, remarking, "How tone deaf can one be."
In response to the criticism, SAG-AFTRA has since defended Fran's decision to take the quick trip as part of her work as a longstanding "brand ambassador" for the high-end Italian fashion line. "President Drescher is working as a brand ambassador for Dolce and Gabbana on location in Italy. This was a commitment fully known to the negotiating committee," they said in a statement.
The statement continued to read, "She has been in negotiations every day either in person or via videoconference. President Drescher is managing a physically demanding schedule across three time zones, overseeing negotiations and working on location daily as well as managing her parents' needs in [Florida]. She is returning to the States and will be on the ground in L.A. tomorrow [July 11], and will continue to chair our negotiations."
The union is currently negotiating for a new film and TV contract with the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers after its previous deal expired at the end of June. In a letter sent to SAG-AFTRA ahead of the end of the contract, more than 400 actors, including Jennifer Lawrence, Meryl Streep and Julia Louis-Dreyfus, warned that they're "prepared to strike" in order to achieve a "transformative deal."
On Tuesday, it's reported that Endeavor boss Ari Emanuel and CAA chief Bryan Lourd offered to step in to help find a pathway to a deal between SAG-AFTRA and the AMPTP. Ari reportedly contacted SAG-AFTRA leadership last week to prevent a total shutdown if the actors join the writers on strike, and Bryan made similar calls.
Meanwhile, the WGA has been on a strike since May 2.